Santa Monica Lookout
|Santa Monica Forward Endorses Council Incumbents, Tax Measures||
By Lookout Staff
September 13, 2016 -- Santa Monica Forward, one of two groups spearheading opposition to a slow-growth initiative on the November ballot, announced Monday that it is endorsing the four City Council incumbents running for re-election.
After interviewing the candidates who responded to the group's questionnaire, Forward's steering committee voted to support Mayor Tony Vazquez, Mayor Pro Tem Ted Winterer and Councilmembers Terry O’Day and Gleam Davis, officials said.
"While we may not always agree with every decision made by the Council, we believe that our current council members have and will continue to do excellent work in shaping the future of our city, as well as encouraging civil, constructive, and fact-based dialogue around the issues we care so much about," Forward officials wrote in a statement.
The group -- which formed a campaign committee in May to oppose the slow-growth Measure LV -- announced it would support five measures on the ballot ("Campaigns Against Santa Monica’s LUVE Initiative Form," May 25, 2016) .
One of the measures is a $345 million bond to support facilities improvements at Santa Monica College that could include rebuilding the main campus’ art complex and two classroom buildings that were constructed in 1952 ("$345 Million Santa Monica College Bond Measure Placed on Ballot," July 7, 2016).
Forward also is supporting Measure GSH, a proposal for a half-cent City sales tax, and Measure GS, the accompanying proposal that recommends the tax revenue be split evenly on the City’s affordable housing program and the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District ("Santa Monica Ballot Will Include Two Sales Tax Measures," June 30, 2016).
"In order to maintain -- and improve -- Santa Monica’s socioeconomic diversity, we must invest in housing at all income levels," Forward officials wrote.
"Additionally, maintaining the highest quality of education for our children is essential to fighting the root causes of poverty and assuring future generations have opportunities to improve their lives."
The group also announced it is backing Measure M, a countywide half-cent tax increase that would, among other things, expand rail and rapid transit systems, repave local streets, retrofit bridges and make public transportation more accessible to seniors.
Measure A, a countywide property tax to fund parks projects, also received the group's backing.
Forward, which includes many of the city's civic, business and political leaders, did not announce a position on local Measure SM, an update of the City’s anti-corruption law, known as the Oaks Initiative.
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